Romance/Romance, the Tony-nominated evening of musical one-act meditations on love, ends its Houston premiere Dec. 30 at Stages Repertory Theatre. Chesley Krohn directs the production, which began performances Nov. 20.
"The Little Comedy," act one of Romance/Romance, is based on a short story by Arthur Schnitzler, in which an 1890's Viennese aristocrat and a passionate young woman assume new identities in pursuit of love. The second, "Summer Share," is set in the Hamptons, where a modern pair of friends finds themselves haunted by their spouses' ghosts as they discuss their plantonic bond and the lust that lies beneath it. Songs in the score include "It's Not Too Late," "I'll Always Remember the Song," "Yes, It's Love," "Let's Not Talk About It," "So Glad I Married Her," "Small Craft Warnings," "Moonlight Passing through a Window" and "Romance! Romance!."
Keith Herrmann wrote the music with lyrics by Outer Critics Circle and Emmy Awards winner Barry Harman. Romance/Romance was nominated for the Best Original Score, Best Book and Best Lyrics at the 1988 Tony Awards, as well as Best Actor (Scott Bakula) and Actress (Alison Fraser). It lost all its categories to Into the Woods and The Phantom of the Opera, but the musical made a star of Fraser.
Romance/Romance stars Tom Prior (Alfred/Sam), Joanne Bonasso (Josefine/Monica), Jennie Welch (Her/Barb) and Jonathan McVay (Him/Lenny). Bonasso last appeared at the Rep in I Love You, You're Perfect, Now Change and Company with co-star Prior.
Designing the show are Thom Guthrie (sets), David Gipson (lighting), Andrew Cloud (costumes), Ellis Stewart (sound) and Jodi Bobrovsky (props). Steven Jones is the musical director. Tickets to The Pavilion are $19-$42. Stages Repertory Theatre is located at 3201 Allen Parkway at Waugh Drive. For reservations, call (713) 527 8243. Stages Repertory Theatre is on the web at http://www.stagestheatre.com.
— By Christine Ehren